Joined: Jul 2005
By Mohammed Al-Ahmadi and Khalid Al-Shulahi |
MADINA ı Prince Naif Bin Abdul Aziz, Minister of Interior, spoke Wednesday at the Islamic University in Madina on terrorism-related subject, foremost among them the problem of deviant thought, critics of the Salafist approach, misguided use of the Internet, rehabilitation of detained deviants and the role of senior scholars.
The Interior Minister, addressing university students and staff in a dialogue session, said he had asked the Imam Mohammed Bin Saud and the King Saud universities in Riyadh to conduct research into why ısuch people slide into involvement in such acts and how the issue can be successfully dealt with.ı
He said the creation of a national strategic plan and a national research center to confront deviant thought was a subject worthy of attention.
ıI have spoken often of the need for intellectual security that not only keeps up with but advances ahead of public security,ı he said. ıThe Saudi citizen is the most important security officer. We require substantial research into the causes of terrorism and what pushes terrorists into it. This research should identify evidence in as objective a fashion as possible.ı
ıOur thought and ideas in our world of both today and yesterday, will remain, and we must stay with what is correct and instruct the next generation in it. We fear first and foremost Allah, and we should not err by accepting un-Islamic approaches. The truth should only be defended with proof, for we are in great need of security.ı
As to the research center, Prince Naif said that King Abdullah had proposed an international research center to combat terrorism to some 54 nations. ıWe hope,ı he said, ıto see this proposal realized in the near future.ı
When asked about suggestions to encourage institutions by creating an award for combating deviant thought in the name of the Prince, he responded by saying that the subject had been discussed and that the prize would be more deserving of bearing the name of King Abdullah, Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques.
Prince Naif then revealed that the Ministry of Interior had foiled around 160 terrorist operations in the Kingdom.
ıIf the terrorists had succeeded in only 20 to 30 percent of their intended plans,ı the Prince warned, ıit would have caused a genuine catastrophe.ı
Prince Naif went on to talk of the dialogue of ideas, describing any failure to confront ideas with ideas as a reflection of lack of effort.
ıThere are still in our time conflicting ideas and it is up to us to be aware of who are active in this field. They are known to us, we know who they belong to, and we know their thought. Their presence enables us to identify any thought emanating from those principles and ideas, and therefore we do not rule out the existence of anti-Islamic motives in general and against this nation, the nation of the Prophetıs Sunnah.ı
Prince Naif continued by addressing critics of Salafism in the media saying that their attacks are unfounded and that they try to blow trivial matters out of all proportion.
ıThis must be challenged with correct knowledge and it is the jurisprudents of Islam who are best equipped to do that.ı
ıWe are a Salafi nation built on the Qurıan and we take pride in that and everyone knows it. Salafism is not a sect. It is not one of the four schools. It is the approach taught to us by the Prophet (peace be upon him).ı
The Prince continued by describing the history of the Saudi states and all the efforts made to preserve the Kingdomıs path up to this day.
The Prince also commented on the use of the Internet which is widely believed to be used to recruit youth and attract them toward deviant thought by saying that the Internet can be used in both meaningful and harmful ways, and while there is no international law limiting freedom of speech we have to be able to distinguish between the good and the bad.
The Prince spoke of the committee charged with advising detainees and correcting thought as performing a duty and achieving the desired goals.
ıPeople cannot say,ı said the Prince, ıthat the committee has applied any pressure or malpractice in its investigations. They have met hundreds of people and they have seen the truth.ı
Prince Naif said dangers can be avoided through a review of the prevailing global system.
ıIt is clear,ı he said, ıthat it is incumbent upon all Muslims, and most notably the Muslim scholars and seekers of knowledge and callers to Islam to take part in solving the problems and crises of human society.ı ı Okaz/SG